At their best, families play a pivotal role in the treatment of substance use disorders and mental health issues, providing crucial support and fostering a nurturing environment for recovery. The familial bond serves as a foundation for emotional support, creating a sense of belonging and stability that is integral to healing. In treatment, family involvement enhances communication, helping to identify and address underlying issues contributing to the disorders. The family unit can also serve as a safety net, offering understanding and encouragement during challenging times. Additionally, family support promotes long-term recovery by reinforcing positive behaviors and establishing a network that aids in preventing relapses. Embracing a holistic approach to treatment, involving families is important for comprehensive and sustainable recovery.
FHE Health works to assist families in being healthy and being a positive force for good with their family member who may be struggling. While the patient is active in treatment, we also utilize family specific resources to help a family, wherever they may be, in their own healing journey.
Family Interventions at FHE Health
Weekly family call with identified family/other support for the patient
The patient can identify a primary contact, such as a parent or a spouse, to be involved in their treatment. We will facilitate a weekly family call, with the patient or not (at the therapist’s discretion), and this contact. Sometimes there will be education discussed, there may be communication as a couple as a focus, or another therapeutic opportunity to benefit the patient’s treatment. The patient must sign a Release of Information for this person and maintain it for the therapist to schedule these sessions.
In some families there may be many interested parties related to a patient’s treatment. All these people may have a Release of Information and want to be updated, but we recommend that a primary support be identified and be the conduit with additional family or friends to make the process and therapists interventions more focused on the patient’s treatment.
We have multiple resources on our webpage that can be helpful for interested family members, be it the guidebooks, community resources, or our support groups. We encourage any family to complete the Concerned Persons Questionnaire and send it in so they can share their perspectives.
Concerned Person Questionnaires
Anyone related or part of a patient’s life can submit a Concerned Persons Questionnaire to the multi-disciplinary team for the program. There is no response to this questionnaire, as we may not have a release, or the patient does not want us to contact people. We can still use this information to get the “bigger picture” if you would like to submit. We appreciate you taking the time to give us more information from an outside perspective. Reminder, we will not send a response or receipt of the form submission to anyone.
(Shatterproof First Responders: please make note on the form anywhere that patient is a first responder)
Program Specific Family Support
Aftercare recommendations and follow-up
Family is included, as the patient desires, for continuing care, appointments, medications, and therapy recommendations from the multi-disciplinary treatment team. We recommend family ask questions and be aware of these recommendations so that they can support and encourage the patient in healthy habits following treatment. The therapist and a case manager are points of contact and are happy to assist with follow-up, appointments, and resources as needed.
Weekly Family Support Groups (Shatterproof and Restore Mental Health)
We offer two 12-week support groups for currently enrolled patients’ families. For the Shatterproof program we have a specific weekly support group for spouses/significant others. Another weekly support group for families is related to patients who are in our treatment for mental health issues. These are free of charge and are open meetings for those who need support while a loved one is going through treatment at FHE Health.
These support groups are lead by our Director of Family Services who will guide participants through topics on mental health issues, self-care, and relationship dynamics. These groups are designed to help participants by offering support, sharing knowledge that empowers, and providing guidance for the next step of healing. We believe in a “parallel process” of family involvement – when a person in need is receiving treatment and the family is receiving support, the whole family is growing together for better outcomes.
Outside family support groups and resources
In today’s digitally connected world, families have access to more resources than ever before. FHE Health staff will make recommendations to resources that are useful and therapeutic for family and interested others in the patient’s life. While treatment is a short-term intervention, it is often advisable to recommend long-term supports such as a therapy group, individual or family therapy, or a support resource for families. We have a listing of family and other educational and support resources. Educational materials are available as well as in-person and virtual support opportunities. Families can self-refer to a support opportunity, discuss with our staff for suggestions, or may be clinically recommended to a support. We believe being healthy is for everyone. Each family member and each patient deserve the opportunity to be their best and to have access to resources that may benefit them. We will help to share and seek out possible resources that can be of benefit.
Understanding Releases of Information: The ability for family to participate in patients care
FHE Health recognizes that each patient is part of a system, be it community, family, work, or other communal settings. Many times, these are supportive and are included in treatment as a positive advocate for the patient, if the patient signs a release for our staff to communicate with the outside party. Patients have the right to decide who is included or not included in their care (unless a court has ruled otherwise). We do not require family or support consents to be signed but we will offer those that we are aware of, and think could facilitate care. As an adult, the patient is not required to have any one on a Release of Information. Per federal law we are not able to confirm nor deny someone’s presence in treatment unless they have given us permission to do so. When families don’t hear from staff during treatment, it can be because we do not have the patient’s written permission to talk to the family about their treatment. Patients can, and sometimes do, revoke a consent after they were allowing information to be shared earlier in treatment. This can happen without notice; it is up to the patient. The facility cannot, by law, give out any information or share any information about the patient or their care without a written Release of Information form that FHE Health makes available at any time during treatment.
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